When we are going through severe drought crisis and farmers suicide across India, to impose a ban on the US-basedbeverage manufactures Coco cola and Pepsi in Tamil Nadu is nothing but a decision in the right direction to signal an end to the exploitatation done to natural resources by these Global manufacturers. But certainly these big corporate has the wherewithal to fight a legal battle against the ban, probably they might win the battle to continue their operation of exploiting the groundwater, commodifying & selling at a higher price and make the profit out of their operation. The long-term threat posed by these companies is unimaginable and might seriously lead to a severe water crisis. Although it is well-known fact due to over-exploitation of water resources, deforestation and global warming the climatic conditions across the world has seen serious changes, which resulted in the severe shortage of fresh water. The move to ban coca cola and Pepsi in Tamil Nadu is in the larger interest of the society, traders across the state of TN has decided not to the promote the products manufactured by these companies .Both these companies earn more than 1400 crore yearly from southern state alone, they have four manufacturing units across the state of Tamil Nadu.
Over the past two decades the sale of bottled water consumption has seen significant increase and in the coming years it would double its consumption , such is the opportunity these major brands see in a developing country like India, Our economy is vastly acquiring the status of consumption driven nation with huge scope of growth and development in the next two decade or so, But we as a nation is also facing serious shortage of clean drinking water because of various reasons post-globalization induced chase for materialistic pleasure . Adding insult to the injury these companies are using every opportunity to drive home a point that it is always safe to drink bottled water which is full of minerals on another hand river water is contaminated and unfit for drinking. The growing middle-class population in India has started to spend more, they understands the importance of clean drinking water, so since they have disposable money to spare, they started depending on these bottled mineral water manufactured marketed by these companies under the brand name Aquafina and Kinley , they also seriously bought the culture of drinking carbonated drinks from their nation and tacitly placed those brands in our society as aspirational one , but on the other hand less privileged who can’t afford ends up consuming unsafe water.
These bottlers increasingly tap on the aquifers that feed rivers and lakes across the country, the cost of their operations has seriously lowered the water tables in the region. A liter of bottled water requires 1.6 liter of water to produce which makes the industry a serious consumer of water. They also want to create the shortage of water making the people’s life more miserable, naturally when the demand for drinking water goes up they see an opportunity to manufacture and sell more, The post world war 11 saw the industrialization gaining momentum , proliferation of industry had seen more usage of water resources and its subsequent increase in polluting the river and streams which were once used as a source of drinking water, More industrial and chemical waste degraded the water both surface & ground water sources. Water is inevitable right of all living creatures on this blue planet, But due to increased exploitation of ground water and other water bodies , the basic right of clean drinking water is taken away from them, Only source as claimed by these MNC’s is to depend more on them for drinking water . They make most lion share of their profit by selling these packed drinking water. Marketing of packaged drinking as mass produced commodity leads to plastic bottle waste . we have seen instances globally on the reported ruptured relationship between countries sharing common water resources, and several countries which are economically powerful are taking the fight to next well by building huge dams to restrict the flow of water to neighboring countries , So fight for water is becoming interstate & intrastate in nature. The era on fight for oil is over as global community slowly moving towards a war on accessing water, which is fastly becoming a reality .
The Book by Brahma Chellany “Water peace, And water is good to read on the water crisis.